Salutations - The Courtesy of the Street - Dances and Invitations - Etiquette of Dining - Differences that May Puzzle English Girls - Importance of Small Things

The rule as to salutations is different in France.

An English girl must not be annoyed to see a Frenchman she has only met once raising his hat to her before she has given any sign of recognition. It is his privilege so to offer homage to a lady. In the same way it is the duty of a girl to say " How do you do ? " to any lady older than herself or to any married lady.

A French girl always curtseys when shaking hands with a married lady until she is married herself. Then she only curtseys to Royalty, or, if she is very young, to an elderly lady.

When in the street, a gentleman always walks on the left side of a lady, whether he happens to be on the inside of the pavement or not. The right is the place of honour, and therefore given to the lady. A girl walks on the left of a married lady, or one older than herself.

Balls And Dances

When a girl receives an invitation to a dance she is generally asked to send in her "list" - i.e., the list of men she would like invited. She then sends in about half a dozen names, with addresses, to her hostess, Who invites the young men. To each is sent an ordinary card of invitation, and at the end is written " De la part de Mademoiselle X."

The girl has thus a certain number of dances assured, and never goes to a ball feeling that she may know no one beyond her own parents and the family of her hostess.

The young men on their side are flattered by the invitation, and it usually means that another house giving good parties is open to them.

A French girl never goes to a dance without either her father or mother, or some competent chaperon.

A few years ago the mothers sat round the ballroom or in a salon opening into it, from where they could watch the dancing. Now bridge or poker is generally provided for those who care to play.

A ball without a cotillon is voted rather dull, so it has become an established custom to arrange one. For that, a girl may accept two or even three partners, each of whom brings her presents and dances with her.


French girls are never taken to dinners at the good restaurants until they are married. If English girls are seen at any of these they cannot help making themselves somewhat conspicuous.

At such times much depends upon the bearing of the girl. If they are nice and do not make audible, unpleasant remarks about the place or people, the way things are done, etc., as is so often the case, foreigners will simply say, " Oh, they are English," and "Cela ce fait a Londres." But loud tones, a loud laugh, or anything that attracts attention, will cause them to be regarded as fast. Still, there are many little differences that it is well for an English girl to know.

Table Manners

She should not look disgusted, as some do, to see foreigners eating soup from the tip, instead of from the side, of the spoon. It is the correct way in France, and she can be sure that all those using the side are either English or American. In this instance an English girl can certainly follow English ideas if she prefers, but she must not think foreigners ill-bred because they have not the same laws of etiquette.

Some English girls go on eating when her neighbour is taking pains to talk to her. That is not only considered rude, but greedy. Eating is never a very pretty operation at any time, and when a Frenchman is trying his best to entertain her she should at least appear interested. As the conversation so often becomes general, she will always find time for her dinner. Salad must not be touched with a knife. It is served on salad-plates as in England, but must only be touched with a fork. It is supposed to be sent up the right size for eating, but if it should need cutting it must be done with the fork.

Fruit is often served on one large silver dish. If an apple or a pear needs cutting, on account of its size, a girl should always be careful to take the portion that has no stalk. Of course, the idea is to leave the larger portion for the next person.

Glasses are set straight in front at the head of each plate, and not on the right-hand side. This arrangement makes it easier for the servants to hand dishes, and it may be also because it is not correct to sit with the hands in the lap between the courses. They must be seen. The English girl is so often careless about her hands. They are either red from too much sport, or not properly manicured. She may notice that she is the only one at the table whose hands are not seen, still she is reluctant to show her own. She is conscious she lacks the ease and grace so natural to the Latin race.

The hands should be seen, but an elbow must on no account be put upon the table. This, to an English girl, may seem a very small thing, but small things make a great difference in France.

The Strange Creatures of heraldry - Lions

By The Lady Helen Forbes

The King of Beasts Stands for Kings and their Kingdoms - Lions with Crowns and Sceptres - The Silver Lion of Bohemia - The Lions and the Hearts: Strength and Love - The Leopards of England

If in heraldry the eagle is the first of all creatures, as the emperor was the first of all men, so the lion, the king of beasts, stands for kings and their kingdoms.

An example of the lion sejant, or sitting

An example of the lion sejant, or sitting

It was not every king, to be sure, who took a lion for his cognisance, but it was by far the favourite charge. The heraldic lion can upon occasion spring, sit, lie, sleep, or merely stand, but, as a rule, he far more often ramps or " passes." Our most familiar lions - the English and the Scottish - do both.